Turkish, US, French defense ministers discuss anti-Daesh fight

– Defense Minister Fikri Isik and his US, French counterparts discuss Mosul offensive and planned operations in northern Syria

– Turkey, the United States, and France have agreed on basic principles in the fight against Daesh, diplomatic and military sources confirmed Wednesday, according to Anadolu Agency.

In a tripartite meeting, Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik and his U.S. and French counterparts Ash Carter and Jean-Yves Le Drian, in Brussels for a gathering of NATO defense ministers, discussed the ongoing operations in Mosul which started last week to liberate the Iraqi city from Daesh.

According to diplomatic and military sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media, the three also decided to make more contact on the Mosul offensive as well as the planned operations in northern Syria.

They all agreed that the administration should be left to the local people, both in Mosul and the Syrian city of Raqqa – the so-called “capital” of the Daesh terror group – when they are liberated from Daesh.

Isik reiterated that developments in Mosul are in Turkey’s direct interest.

“Any possible mass migration from Mosul will head first towards Turkey,” the sources quoted him as saying.

Referring to an agreement with coalition forces for Turkey’s air forces to take part in the Mosul operation, Isik said Turkish jets stand ready.

The Pentagon said the meeting also included an “update on military operations to retake Mosul and Raqqa,” and that Carter emphasized the need for the coalition to maintain pressure on Daesh on multiple fronts.